Arriving at a new section of Black Mesa, you work your way through to a test chamber where you are transported to part of the border-world called Xen.
There, you are asked to help Xen and its lifeforms.
Your job, should you choose to take it, is….well, wait and see.
This was September 2022’s Classic of the Month mod.
- Title: Mission of Mercy
- File Name: hl1-sp-mission-of-mercy.7z
- Original File Name: mom.zip
- Size : 2.45MB
- Author: Dave Waters
- Date Released: 22 September 1999
You will need to lead a scientist and a security guard to open some doors for you.
Once the rocket has been launched, go down the elevator but send it back up, to see the exit.
If, and I am certain it will, the mod crashes as you exit the pipe into the outside, just noclip through to the centre of the stone and look for the pipe. It should work from there. Some say that NOTARGET works, but I haven’t tested that. If you don’t want to do that, you are only missing 30 seconds and no fighting before the mod finishes anyway.
- Copy the mom folder into your Half-Life folder.
- Restart or start Steam.
- Mission of Mercy should now be listed in your Library tab.
If you require more help, please visit the Help page.
The playthrough below is part of the Classic of the Month Event, run by Don AKA Unq.
Click on the thumbnails below to open a 1024 pixel wide image.
WARNING: The screenshots contain spoilers.
The correlation between the thumbnails and full-size images has got lost. Sorry about that.
3Last 7 days
16Last 30 days
Using Gauge: Users
Manually: 4 Users
Average: 0 Hours, 47 Mins
Shortest: 0 Hours, 30 Mins by Anhiro
Longest: 1 Hours by El_WaKa
Total Time Played: 3 Hours, 7 Mins
If you believe this release is missing important tags, please suggest them in a comment?
Can someone give me some advise please? I’m at map newsp6. Launched missle, got tha Gauss Gun, now I’m in a drainage pipe headed out side. On top of what looks like a helipad are 2 soldiers and a choper hoovering ahead.After eliminating soldiers I attempt to jump out of pipe and game crashes to desktop. I’ve lowered sound to “0”, lowered sound accelleration to either basic or no acceleration. Tried everything I can think of but still can’t seem to get out of that pipe. Help please.
It did that for me too so I loaded it into my none steam HL and went through it.Basically you kill a half dozen soldiers,drop down a pipe meat a zen ship and game over.So basically you missed 30 seconds of it.
Thanks andyb. The only HL version I have is thru Steam but will continue to try new things in hope I will find a solution.
security door wont open on first map to retrieve the weapons before you go through the portal what am I doing wrong?.
Perhaps someone can help me. I cannot find how to get to map newsp5 ! I have launched the rocket, got the gauss gun, and even went back to the lowest level of the silo to fight more grunts (all in newsp4), but cannot find the trigger to map 5. I have gone back to every section of the complex and all the bad guys are dead, but still cannot enter map 5.
Any help is appreciated.
Please ignore the above post; I just found it.
Short but OK mod. Some nice environment design. Not enough fighting for me.
Didn’t have any problems as in post# 1.
Transport up into the Xen ship. The end
This mod received good reviews back when it was first released, i.e. 1999 with the following game sites ranking as follows;
I seemed to have rated it lower at the time scoring it 6/10 which seems a bit mean in comparison, may give it replay just to see.
I like mods to travel through unknown spaces. This mod uses the same map a few times to switch something here, go back, switch there, go back an fight a few spawn soldiers and blackops standing in the way.
I experienced the same issue than david4255. I tried to contact the author, to no availability. Seems like this mod is definitely not Steam-friendly.
I had the same issue as the people above; the game crashes whenever the grunts attack you or you engage them right outside the sewer pipe in newsp5. You can sort of skip this bit by either turning on notarget in the console and run through the grunts and into the next map or just load the next map by typing map newsp6. Really annoying on an otherwise fairly solid map pack.
Apart from this game breaking bug I sorta enjoyed it. It’s a bit unfair and sometimes frantically frustrating as this is fundamentally just a gruntfest and you never run into any allies along the way. And there’s a lot of them. Worst still is that there’s not many health packs or stations to aid you. Usually you never get any resupplies, expect for perhaps one health pack, just before a tough battle so prepare to do a lot of quick saving and loading until you are satisfied with the results, i.e. not having less than 12 HP left after one firefight.
The combat section aside the maps reeks of high quality in terms of level design, texturing and lighting. There’s nothing architecturally impressive but this is of no major issue since everything else looks very good and fresh.
It’s hard to really recommend this due to the aforementioned bug and unfair combat but if you are looking for a challenge you might want to take a look.
This was an enjoyable mod but I did struggle to find the route at least once. I was going up and down the elevators a few times before I finally realized what I was supposed to do. Even now, I don’t think it’s entirely obvious.
Anyway, if you gets tuck, please see the main post for TIPS.
The mod has a polished feel about it, it fits my playtime desires; that is around 90 minutes, has a basic story and was well balanced.
There are two areas that bugged me. The first one is the vent that leads from the storage room, behind the security guard’s desk. If it doesn’t lead anywhere, don’t allow me to go there! At least the author loaded the last quick save when I died.
And the second is where you die because you pressed the wrong elevator button. It was possibly funny in 1999, but now it just seems stupid.
All in all a fun mod to play and more like this would be very welcome.
The screenshot thumbnails are completely different to the screenshot themselves.
I’m stuck at the part where we first see the grunts, am I meant to just run past them until I find a weapon?
EDIT: I just realised that I missed the peashooter and 357. Way too easy to miss, I am not impressed…
Yes, sorry about that. I mention it above the screenshots.
Oh, I didn’t see that. Sorry!
There were too many annoying things in this.
I did enjoy this mod but I found that I constantly had to backtrack or use cheats for some reason or another. The penultimate map was a disaster. A mix of combat and puzzles it was fun but way too easy, especially near the end when you have the 357, Tau and xbow. Also you work for the Xen aliens and so only kill grunts, which was a nice idea and should be implemented a lot more in my opinion.
It is incredibly easy to miss at least FIVE of the weapons in this mod, which are: 9mmhandgun, 357, Tau Cannon and crossbow. I missed the two weapons at the beginning and so had to restart the mod in order to get them, the other three I didn’t miss but I would have had I of not decided to turn back and go down the lift. The lift that kills you annoyed me horribly, not something you want to see after fighting your way through many grunts, although I managed to call the lift without dying because of the wall glitch second time around. It still loads your last save however. Then we get to the stage where we crash after coming out of the pipe which I think is caused by someone using a weapon in the wrong position (grunts or you) so just noclip past it.
I was unsure whether to give this a TT or a Maybe, but decided to go with the latter because it was relatively enjoyable.
And yet another one that could have been better than the screen-shots suggest, but was fun(ish)!
OK, if Gordon killed Nihilanth at the end of HL1 and was the last of his kind, what’s he doing here?
The game wasn’t really challenging but there is some fun value in it. Near the beginning you transport to Xen and the temptation to kill the residents is strong, however none tried to attack, not even the bullsquid (which normally attacks humans and Xenizens alike!).
The look and feel was nothing special, however in 1999 people probably thought it looked good.
The end (or from what I’ve since read is close enough) was the game killer I tried noclip and notarget and running in software mode but the pipe was the end for me as well.
Did you try what Phillip said in the tips section? Noclip underneath the pipe and into the other one, it worked for me. The ending is just one big long boring sequence with nothing to offer anyway.
Yup! and same thing!
After reading your reply went back and tried it again and still no joy, thanks anyway.
Mission of Mercy is one of my favorites from the early days. It has mostly held up to the test of time, but the polish has come off it a little. It’s still worth a play, but it did also crash for me on the Osprey map repeatedly, I had to use notarget to get past that map. It’s very near the end anyway.
It’s pretty well designed, although I can find some fault with the side treks that you have to do if you want to find all the weapons and health. And essentially, you’ll need these weapons in the vehicle bay and rocket silo because they’re both full of grunts and are pretty good challenges. I also didn’t like the death trap elevator. It wasn’t really funny in “99 either, I can assure you.
At heart this was a gruntfest, but I did like the challenge it provides. It’s too bad the Osprey map crashes for a lot of people, this can actually be a pretty challenging section since the Osprey replenishes the grunts you kill. Mission of Mercy does set up the scene pretty well though, having you work for the Xen aliens. There’s not much story otherwise, the opening maps just kind of set up the framework for the maps.
Overall it’s a nice play but can’t really be counted among the best of the best like it was in the early days.
Didn’t really enjoy this one. There are areas where new enemies spawn out of nowhere after you have cleared them, which is really annoying. Also I missed the first cache of weapons when I played the map the first time, which made the rest of it extremely hard. I had to wait for the grunts to blow each other up with grenades so I could grab a gun, which was not easy. That and the broken ending make this something to do only if you are really bored.
G-Man couldn’t control Xen, so he decided to destroy it. The aliens asked Freeman to help them.
The beginning frightened me – another truck – Unknown Faction reminder! Good thing that there’s no truck ride. We enter the corridor with original “sharp” architecture, take the suit and turn on the teleporter. Unfortunately, it couldn’t go on without a tragedy, poor guard 🙁 We don’t forget to take his weapons and enter the teleport.
The firefights at the base are very intense – I had to dodge with 1% of health, I enjoyed it, but I know that this is a love\hate moment, because not everyone likes hard challenges. Do your best to find the crossbow at the next level, so you’ll be able to relax later.
The design is decent, the layout is interesting, but puzzling and confusing. I didn’t find a way to progress at the second level after Xen, it turned out that we need to go back to the first and search there.
It ends at the railroad bridge, which is very similar to the one in Kingpin: Life of Crime.
If hard battles and puzzling layout don’t frighten you, play it.
I’ll give this a play it latter because worths the effort but I think layout issues hindered the gameplay which I think it could be so much more fulent and dynamic, that section right after launching the rocket where u have to go back to get the gauss cannon was almost nosense and is the cause of the major unbalance in this mod, also that part where u press the button of the elevator in another wasted outside area and the funny grunties send you an explosive gift that kill u and u hear the funy guys laugh, maybe was an humoristic cliche, but was nosense too just a waste of mapping in my opinion, i’d preffer found the gauss cannon there, than that silly explosive gift.
The 6th map prior to the ending one crahed for me and I have to finish this mod in my old sierra HL verssion, thing which I hate but strangely has become common in the recent last 2 mods that i’ve played, maybe that hapens because of the ageing of the mod or something related to that. Overall, and despite of that crash the mod was ok, with a basic story-mission but if the author would have polished the layout problems we could have a play it now here.
I also almost forgot to tell you i’ve alredy played this mod about 5 or 7 years ago!!, I didn’t remember it untill I played it and loked familiar to me so yeap that’s odd, because I almost remember everything i’ve played just by watching the screenshots.
Old classic pack by US author Dave Waters, I guess everyone already played this often 😉
What’s cool here is the story and the presentation itself.
The aliens are your friends as you are the only who can save their world from the evil forces of humanity behind the Gman.
While story and mapping is nice and very good, I just can’t be that happy about the rest.
But let’s check the good arguments to play MoM first.
As said, the story is usual but still in the HL universe.
Nihilanth wants you to launch the rocket before the humans to save the Xenians after they found out that you, Gordon Freeman, have great abilities in your HEV suit..
Or maybe just “limitless potential” ? 😉
You agree to their plan to launch the rocket and are being send down to Earth to complete this mission…
The mapping is very cool and stunning, I like the architecture and layouts much, also the lighting and the varied areas you’ll have to visit.
Now what I don’t like are several facts.
First of all it’s balancing, there is a bad mix of much ammo, but less healing possibilities here.
The number of grunts is quite high, so it’s tough combat as they’re usually not alone..
Then, for my taste, there are just too many design flaws and oddities like enemy placement, triggering scripts and suddenly appearing grunts out of nowhere.
Another example is that you often run into some new sections and are already expected there.
You’ll know what I mean when reaching the rocket, a dark hall, the outdoor areas etc.
There’s even a deadly end which is kind of pointless and unnecessary…
At least there are auto-saves.
And some easy puzzles, cutscenes and scripts.
BUT, that doesn’t save it. Maybe it was a great mod back in “99, but to me it’s not good as it could have been if only the author would have made it more realistic.
Therefore I can’t recommend to play it these days..
-Unusal HL story, aliens are your friends (but they never help you unfortunately)
-Supreme mapping, great design and lighting
-(Too?) tough combat situations
-A few, easy puzzles
-A few scripted sequences
-Balancing (see above)
-Many design flaws, oddities and illogicalness etc.
As expected with this anticipated release, Dave Water’s takes the wide open spot of second best Half-Life SP level as far as I’m concerned. Second best can’t be a bad thing; but USS Darkstar continues to be in its own universe; nothing released so far, including Mission of Mercy can come close.
Good Half-Life levels of this calibre have been so very hard to come by that maybe the actual quality of each map has been blown out of proportions; In Quake2, this would’ve been just a very good level, but because it’s Half-Life, it’s absolutely unmissable! But then again, Half-Life requires so much more work and depth in the SP levels because of the high standards Valve set. When Quake2 maps such as The Widening Gyre easily rank amongst the best because of looks, fighting and layout alone, Half-Life maps are obliged to much more than that. Things like stories and scripted events become so important and always, with the exception of USS Darkstar, felt underdone in all the levels I’ve played. Mission of Mercy is no exception and despite its exceptional quality, I was still left thirsty for something more epic.
The context is certainly something very original and intriguing; you must help Xen from getting destroyed by the government? Taking orders from Nihilanth doesn’t exactly go into your mind peacefully, yet I admire the originality. But the concept wasn’t used fully. For one thing, the Xenoids are completely taken out of the action! They’re your allies, and they’re big, mean mothers! A script that has friendly Xen teleport into grunt-fights to help you survive would’ve made sense and also would’ve been inifinitely awesome. Instead grunts are the only baddies you have to kill as you wander through a big millitary complex, trying to find a rocket to launch, and then escape. Quite a typical, rather unoriginal style, but it really showed promise at the beginning to be something otherwise.
One thing Dave’s got locked for certain though, is the base design. I’m talking about Valve quality architecture here! With some great use of lighting that really added atmosphere. I saw a few very minor texture misalignments, but even the original Half-Life had a few of those. The only thing that needed improving was the outdoor area in the second last map, which didn’t feel as convincing. All in all, the design was top-notch and this by far Dave’s most visually appealing release for both Quake2 and Half-Life!
But the star of Mission of Mercy is not the excellent visuals, but the two things Dave has managed to pull off since his Defiance days in Quake2: superlative layout and balance. How this author continuously makes levels that are to-the-edge of impossibility but not quite over-the-edge is quite amazing. Once again, Mission of Mercy serves an example as Dave’s very keen sense of balancing the enemies with the items you get. Also fantastic, was the layout; although the feeling of exploration was lacking, Dave still uses a lot of nice puzzles to try to get you to use your brain in order to advance. Of course, this is not overdone, and the mix of strategy and fighting is perfect.
The fights themselves though, left me somewhat unsatisfied. Half-Life just doesn’t feel right when you play for one hour without seeing a single alien. Once again, I feel that the author’s decision to abandon the Xen ally storyline hurt this map greatly. Fighting only grunts, as funny as those bastards are, can get rather boring, and not enough tricks and raw brutality are thrown in here. Most of the lost health occured when grunts surprised me from behind, or the side; there’s a lot of these “cheap” surprises, but not enough fancy ones, although the cutscene surprise was very fancy and even more sinister 🙂 Like I said earlier, this ‘aint Quake2 and simple behind the doorway ambushes don’t cut it in Half-Life. Mission of Mercy could’ve used more tanks, collapsing ceilings, exploding crates with grunt-inside attacks etc.
In spite of all my complaints, I am not lying when I say I honestly think Mission of Mercy is the second-best Half-Life level out there. The visuals, overall challenge and layout were great, but a lengthier introduction, an actual Xen-aspect, more plot-enhancing special effects, and some dialogue would’ve made this an epic; which the interesting background story certainly gave Mission of Mercy the potential to become. Nonetheless, you’d be a fool to pass this one by.
This review is republished here by permission and was originally published Friday, 1st October, 1999 by Jiang.
This review was originally posted on the Ten Four Website, which is now offline. Permission has been granted to republish the full review and more details can be found on the About page.
If you are still having problems with exiting the pipe in Steam version, do the following:
1. Change directory to k:\Steam\steamapps\Your_Steam_Name\half-life\mom\maps\graphs\
2. Create an empty file named newsp6.nod
3. Load you save game right before the pipe
4. Enter the pipe and proceed with your mission
The game will automatically rebuild all nodegraphs for this map. You need to do this only once.
Great short episode for Half-Life, even too short fo me 🙁 , but very interesting and fun 🙂 . And I didn’t see any bugs or oddities in the whole mod (I successfully played it not less than 4 times), so you better try to search a bit before you consider that you get stuck.
Did you play it in Steam or WON? I got the map6 crash in Steam, but managed to noclip into the final map. Interested to know if your Steam HL behaves differently..
Yes, this is a personal favorite. I liked it that much.
The story is that you’re a friend with the aliens and they want you to launch a rocket.
The combat was amazing. I never felt cheated or annoyed.
The atmosphere was great.
The cutscenes are pretty good and not too shabby.
I say try this one. It’s that good (imo anyway).
I really enjoyed this mod! I played it on WON Half-Life 22.214.171.124 and had a very smooth experience – no bugs, crashes or oddities at all (just the usual occurences of the infamous elevator bug, but I guess that happens even with the most perfect mods), so these must be Steam issues.
It’s an hour of quite polished fun and level design, texturing and lighting are generally of high quality. On “Medium”, I never had a problem with overly hard or even unfair fights, and I also cannot complain about too few health packs or chargers. I don’t understand people complaining about missing weapons. Exploring is rewarded with additional weapons, so not exploring means missing weapons, which is exactly the way it should be.
Yes, the pistol, the Magnum and the grenades are a bit easy to miss, before using the teleporter, but people should also learn to read a mod’s readme.txt file – it’s there for a reason:
“1.) Checklist for the first map: (don’t leave without this stuff)
Hev suit, 9mm pistol, 357 +ammo, handgrenades.”
Also, that you have to look under the elevator, after launching the rocket, was a bit too non-obvious for my taste.
The death-in-the-elevator gag may be not funny, but with your quicksaves and autosaves it shouldn’t hurt your gameplay.
Play It Now!
The main point of this second opinion is simply to defend Dave against a criticism that seems to have been levelled at him by every review so far: that he wasted the novel idea of you being on the aliens’ side by omitting any elements of co-operation. While this would have been great, and indeed I mentioned this to Dave myself while beta-testing for him, it also seems to be impossible, unfortunately. There just doesn’t seem to be a way to persuade the aliens to attack your human opponents but to leave you alone. Perhaps there could have been some section where you observed an alien-on-grunt fight from afar but, to my mind, that wouldn’t have been much of an improvement. In the end, the real reason that the unit feels slightly undercooked is that the initial idea is just too ambitious for the tools that Dave had to work with.
Nevertheless, it’s a very enjoyable set of levels and Jiang’s right when he says it’s the second best level out there – though that means very little right now with the lack of any substantial competition. Seems that third-party Half-Life maps are never going to reach the levels of quantity and quality that Quake 2 enjoyed – and still does to some extent.
This second opinion review is republished here by permission and was originally published Thursday, 13th July, 2000 by Morgan.
This review was originally posted on the Ten Four Website, which is now offline. Permission has been granted to republish the full review and more details can be found on the About page.
This was a fun, but frustrating at times mod, the maps are good and there are some areas with good “gameplay flow”, the problem lies with a few decisions the creator of the mod took, like the intro where you talk with Nihilanth, it feels kinda random, another problem was the difficulty, especially near the end were I was left with low HP and no way to replenish it, a few extra medkits would have been really helpful, there’s also the problem with the ladder hidden in the elevator shaft where you need to go to progress, I found it the first time but it can be easy to miss, overall, the mod was fun but I wouldn’t call it a “must play”
Mission of Mercy aged pretty poorly after all these years. The plot is that you’re working with the Xen aliens in order to attack a Marine silo base. But, as others have already pointed out decades ago, this is never manifested concretely during gameplay (like in Sweet Half-Life for example).
The map layout provides almost open-ended gameplay at the beginning. Sadly, no effort was made to signal to the player that one of the very first doors you come across leads to another part of the level which has very useful weapon drops. Some people may go on their merry way through the campaign without them and end up severely crippled without them. Later on, this problem is compounded by the fact that health pick ups become rarer the further you progress, and Marine ambushes become even more sadistic. The Osprey fight at the end, in particular, is one of the toughest encounters I’ve come across: little to no cover, enemies have the high ground, the objective is on top of said high ground and the Osprey tosses HGrunts in packs of 4 directly on top of the objective. As you’re outgunned and probably low on ammo on health, your chances of making it through this part are really low. So hope you saved your contact grenades for this part, because you’ll definitely need them here.
I’ve noticed that in the map with the blast door leading to the nuclear silo after the Assassin fight, if you press the button which makes you go back to the previous map, you can easily get stuck in the world geometry after the loading. Another bad mark for this map.
Conclusion: Interesting storyline concept and challenging fights for its time. However, the general implementation of it is clearly unpolished in this day and age.